Preseason Preview and Chat: The Golden State Warriors

Darius Soriano —  October 7, 2012

Basketball is back!

Yes, it’s only preseason. And, no, the Lakers won’t yet have their full roster playing together after their stupendous summer of high profile acquisitions. Still, the team will be taking the floor in a real basketball game where we get to see them compete against another NBA team. Good times.

First, some housekeeping. Dwight Howard will not play as he’s not yet been cleared to participate in games by his doctors nor the Lakers’ trainers. In his place, one of the two Lakers’ rookie big men — Robert Sacre or Greg Somogyi — will start at center with Pau Gasol playing his normal power forward slot. The other questionable Laker, Kobe, is likely to play tonight — though for how long, is a different question — after returning to practice on Saturday due to a sore foot that kept him out of both Friday sessions.

The rest of the starting lineup should look exactly as you’d expect with Nash joining Kobe in the back-court and Ron-Ron flanking Pau and rookie big man X in the front-court. As with Kobe, the question is how much these guys will play, but it will be nice to see how they work together on offense in the new Princeton sets and if there are any marked differences in the defensive schemes from last season.

While it’s understandable the starters draw most of the interest, I’m actually looking forward to getting a better look at all the reserves the Lakers have on their camp roster. In practices, Jamison has been getting some run at small forward, Ebanks at shooting guard, and there’s been some competition at point guard between Blake and Chris Duhon. How all these guys play tonight, in roles they’re not necessarily used to playing, will be something to watch for.

I’ll also be keeping a close eye on Jodie Meeks, who’s not yet found a clear spot as Kobe’s backup in this first week of camp. I’d like to see him get some run and flash some of what made him a key acquisition. Along with Meeks, I’m also interested in seeing how much run, if any, Reeves Nelson, Chris Douglas-Roberts, and Darius Johnson-Odom get as wing options just to see how they perform in live action. All three have a lot of work to do to make the team, but showing some promise in game action should catch the coaches eye.

Lastly, second year vets Darius Morris and Andrew Goudelock are guys worth paying attention to. Both should see some run and both have something to prove coming into their second seasons. Morris, by all accounts, has had a very good summer both in terms of improving his body and working on his game. He could very well be competing for point guard minutes once the season starts and it will be nice to see if his hard work can translate to the court. As for Goudelock, his contract is not guaranteed making him the only returning player in legitimate danger of not making the roster. Has his game grown? Can he play point guard? Can he defend better than he showed last year? These are vital questions for him.

As for the Lakers opponents, the Warriors are literally a brand new team. Last season’s acquisition of Andrew Bogut (in the Monta Ellis trade) is already paying dividends for the Dubs as his fiery, defensive style is starting to wear off on his teammates. They’ve also added veterans Carl Landry and Jarrett Jack, both who promise to add toughness to a lineup that can desperately use some.

Beyond the new vets, the Dubs also bring in several quality rookies — Harrison Barnes, Draymond Green, and Festus Ezeli — all of whom are capable of playing minutes in this league. Barnes is likely to get heavy minutes at SF for this team, but Green is a nice combo forward and Ezeli a rugged big man that can also prove worthy back ups for the Dubs.

All in all, the Warriors are a very nice team and have been rebuilt with talented players at multiple positions who are now added to a roster that already had some very good players. This team hopes to finally break through this season and they look to have a much more competitive roster to make that happen.

Of course, with all the above being said, nothing will be determined tonight. The result, whether a win or a loss, doesn’t really mean much. The bigger goal is to begin to build a foundation and use the contest as a teaching moment for the players. If nothing else, tonight will offer some tape for the coaches of both teams to study and to take back to the players with some positives that can continue to be refined and some negatives that need to be cleaned up.

But for the fans, it will be our first basketball in some time. And for that, get excited. The NBA is back and we get to talk about actual games.

Darius Soriano

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48 responses to Preseason Preview and Chat: The Golden State Warriors

  1. I’m getting “Blackout” on my TWCSN channel. Anywhere else to watch?

  2. Are pre-season games available free online at nba.com? I just invested in international league p@ss, but I seem to remember them trying to charge a few bucks for it last year.

    Also, I suggest that you search LShunter in google. If you go to their website, you can probably find what you’re looking for. ;) ;);)

  3. Don,
    At TWC’s website, you should be able to stream the game if you’re a subsciber. Here’s a tweet they sent me: https://twitter.com/twcsportsnet/status/255045879172579328

  4. Does anyone know of places to go watch the game if you do not have TWC. Every restraint or bar I have called so far uses directtv and this is seeming like a fruitless search…

  5. 3, same boat. Have tried 10 places! Please post if anyone finds a spot!

  6. Guess you could always watch a stream like we do it here in Sweden?

    http://www.lshunter.tv/basketball-live-streaming-video.html

  7. For nba league pass subscribers, doesn’t look like the game is being shown, but has anyone heard about lakers regular season games not being shown on league pass? We should be able to still view these as part of the package right?

  8. Here is another site to watch the Lakers game

    http://www.thefirstrow.eu/sport/basketball.html

  9. I can now state with some confidence there is not a single sports bar in a 150 mile radius that carries that f$$$$n channel

  10. Pretty pissed off I can’t watch this game on my TV. Some people actually like the preseason and see the team progress.

  11. JD – to be honest someone purchased NBA league pass for me one season and it was a total waste. I don’t know if it was due to where I live, but I hardly saw any Laker games on league pass. Most of the time I was watching it on regular tv or espn. Most of the laker games were blacked out for me.

    Again, not sure if it was due to where I live, but turned out to be very disappointing.

    If they showed all the laker games I would buy it every year.

  12. any sign of a working link?

  13. Man, this is real.

    Nash in a purple and gold jersey.

  14. I like what D12 is saying about the Lakers 5, being the Avengers… pretty cool…

  15. D12 = Iron Man
    Nash = Capt. America
    Pau = ?
    Kobe = ?
    Metta = ?

    Fill in the black guys..

  16. i can’t believe im watching a kobe-nash backcourt!

  17. @dice8up, Metta would definitely be the Hulk. ;-)

  18. I came on here to see if anyone is complaining that M. Brown is playing the vets so much in the 2nd quarter… hehehe too early?

    btw: Nash is pretty good at passing and hitting 3s.

  19. Updated:

    D12 = Iron Man
    Nash = Capt. America
    Pau = ?
    Kobe = ?
    Metta = The Hulk (#18 Mark Sigal)

    I totally agree… Metta should be The Hulk…

  20. Wasn’t Kobe=Wolverine or something?
    A good fit since there’s going to be an

    Uncanny Avengers :D

  21. @Jerry that would be because of where u live. local blackout rules apply. Ive been able to watch every lakers game through league pass the past 4 years. I don’t live in SoCal tho. For me it’s the closest NorCal team (the warriors) I can’t watch. I believe 90 miles is where the blackout rules apply.

  22. Did the starters play at all in the 3rd?

  23. @Shaun,

    Nope. Nash, Kobe and MWP didn’t even come out of the Locker Room.

  24. I am watching baseball, but the Lakers have been outscored 44-10 in the second half. Not good no matter what the situation.

    Nash=Hawkeye
    Kobe=Iron Man
    MP=Hulk
    Howard=Thor
    Pau=Black Widow/Swan

    This team doesn’t really have a Captain America–Nash, is, after all, Canadian. ;-)

  25. You’d expect a bench player to just ball hog and show what he can do but nope. Spots are their to be had.

  26. Geez. I know it’s preseason and all, but how do you not score a single point in 12 minutes and give up a 35-0 run?? That doesn’t even happen in park ball! :) The bench did not look good tonight. Hopefully, they’ll build some chemistry as the preseason continues.

  27. Can Nash really be captain America??? He’s Canadian!!!

  28. I think Kobe is closer to Iron Man, with his kind of humor, arrogance, wealth, and intelligence.

    Dwight could be Thor, wanting to be liked and all, and being near indestructible being an Asguardian.

    Pau, I was tempted to say Hawk-eye because he likes high places(hah) and has good vision and range, as well as being converted to the other side from time to time (team Spain).

    Metta as Hulk is funny and agree – and the only way to control him would be to stay mad at all times… perfect.

    Nash as Captain America is sooooo ironic considering that he’s not American, but it really fits what he’s expected to do…

  29. @harold, shouldn’t Nash be Thor? He wields the rock like Thor’s Hammer (basically the hammer does whatever Thor says, and that’s what Nash does with the ball.) Plus he’s a guard, asGUARDian (even though it is spelled asgard…

    Kobe is Nick Fury. Oversees them all.

  30. Yes I know it’s practice game but a 35 to 0 run? Other the girls basketball I have never ever seen that.

    Could be worst coached 2nd half I ever saw. Great 8 player but is this more Brown confusion.

  31. @radius

    Interesting debate, but thankfully the basketball does not care whether it is wielded by Nash or Kobe or Pau, all of whom are expected to pass it with some proficiency ;)

    Kobe being Nick Fury crossed my mind, but that should be Mike Brown, but I’m guessing a lot can be made about Kobe only having One Eye for the Ball, etc.

    Anyway, this would’ve been more fun to talk about before the pre-season ;)

  32. @ Harold… PErfect!!!!

    @ radius… I think Mike Brown is more like Nick Fury.. they are both bald.. lol.. and they direct things…

    UPDATE:

    D12 = Iron Man.. He likes it. And keeps mentioning it on the interview. He wants to be known as the IronMan.. so lets give it to him.
    Nash = Capt America (Ironic ‘coz he’s Canadian, but perfect for his style of play)
    Kobe = Thor ( the demi god. He strikes with fury, like a black mamba)
    Pau = Defintely Hawk-eye
    Matta = Hulk. No questions.

    Mike Brown = Nick Fury

    Go laker Avengers!!!

  33. is Jamison The Black Widow?

  34. well let’s hope we will be dominating this season go lakers!!!

  35. Dwight should not play at all in these preseason games. They are no bearing games played by a bunch of losers who have no pride at all being buried with 30 unanswered points. Well, GS were playing their veterans and Lakers were playing Somodji and Sacre. Whatever, when you wear that purple and gold. have a little pride to compete.

    Another first for Mike Brown, He lost the first season game last year and lost his first preseasons game this year with a marquee names in the 2nd team from Meeks, Jamison, Ebanks, Hill, plus fillers like Duhon, Clark and Douglas. Rookies appeared atrocious including Goudilock and Morrris.

    If you are one of the Lakers who did not watch the game but excited with the moves during summer, it is so deflating to know that our bench were walloped at 110-83. That’s Mike Brown, no heart, no pride even during preseason games.

  36. @radius … i had to lol on the Jamison = Black Widow comparison… it’s good though…

    For sure Agent Romanov is going to have a lot to say on that one… lol

  37. Dear Edwin

    Thank you. Poor Mike can’t use the no preseason lie this year. Can’t imagine a Wooden 4th team going 0 to 35.

    Team Should show some coaching from 1 to 19.

    Brown remains clueless.

  38. @37 Edwin – Indeed, MB could have used the entire 2nd half a bit better than he did. Too many minutes for known scrubs. But, as the 1st pre-season game, he have the excuse that we need to see those guys playing. Sacre, Somodji, Clark, Duhon were pretty bad. DJO also didn’t impress that much. CDR, on the other hand, was able to get something done, but was very little.

    Overall, I feel good. My only concern is Jamison. I expected more from him. Meeks did good under the circunstances. Approved.

  39. These comments blasting Mike Brown are comical to me. He played the Lakers 3rd & 4th stringers against the guys the Warriors started. Nash, Kobe, and Pau didn’t play the entire 2nd half. This game — including the W’s big run — meant as close to nothing as possible within the context of what we can learn about this team. And that includes what anyone thinks it says about Mike Brown.

  40. Yeah I will criticize Mike Brown as quickly as anyone, but the point of this preseason game is to determine who makes to team, not “play with pride” whatever that means. The fringe players played hard they were simply outclassed by more talented veritable NBA rotation players.

  41. If I’m not mistaken, phil Jackson almost never won a preseason game. These games mean absolutely nothing

  42. Jeeez’… relax. Our starters killed GSW to open the game. Nash burnt the heart and soul of Jarret Jack, and Sacre got to run up and down the court a litte, without hurting the Lakers’ season in any way.

    A lot of good things accomplished, and I enjoyed every minute of watching Nash in that purple and gold.

    Here is to a good season.

  43. From the small sample of CDR I seen tonight, I dont see Ebanks keeping the backup SF position for too long.

  44. that mike brown, showing he cant coach a meaningless game in Fresno where his 2nd & 3rd stringers are playing against starters!! doesnt he know how to coach!?

    sarcasm

  45. Obviously, after one pre-season game, it’s time to panic and run Brown out of town. Serioously, I prefer to look at the first half which the Lakers won without their starting center.

  46. Mike Brown should not be immune to criticism. In Cleveland, he refused to speed up the pace of the offense and run the ball with Lebron and a bunch of shooters on the team. That was a head scratcher. He than decided to play inside out ball when an aging Shaq joined the team. Another head scratcher. I cant blame Lebron for lacking confidence in his coach, nor should we point the finger at Laker fans who feel the same way.

    Last season, his offense was to give it Bynum or Kobe in isolation, until defenses started packing in the paint. Than his offense became, give it to Kobe, who is in his 17 season, coming off a knee procedure, and play him as many minutes as possible. He failed miserably when it came to managing minutes for Kobe and utilizing Gasol more effectively. In the final playoff game, however, he suddenly had a change of heart in terms of resting Kobe, and decided to rest Kobe at the start of the fourth quarter in the most important game of the season. Season over.

    I don’t think people are criticizing Brown for his coaching of a pre season game, but he has yet to gain confidence from a large portion of Laker fans, and even a meaningless preseason game is going to confirm those beliefs until Mike Brown proves that he is worthy of coaching a championship level team. From my perspective, he has a lot to prove.